Winter View bewitches her rivals
Augustin Stable's homebred WINTER VIEW (Thunder Gulch) raced in last during the early going of Thursday's 1 1/2-mile Bewitch S. (G3) at Keeneland, kicked into gear during the stretch run and drew off to record a two-length victory in the $150,000 event. With Julien Leparoux aboard, the Jonathan Sheppard trainee stopped the clock in 2:34 over the firm turf course, paying $11.60, $5.40 and $3.20 as the 9-2 third pick.
Communique (Smart Strike) was always close to the pace and managed to get her neck in front of pacesetter Dress Rehearsal (Ire) (Galileo [Ire]) on the line, giving back $4.40 and $2.60 as the near 4-1 second choice. Dress Rehearsal was sent off the 3-5 favorite and posted splits of :27 3/5, :53 3/5, 1:19 2/5 and 1:45 2/5 before just missing second while holding third by a nose over Caprice (Ger) (Monsun). Show was worth $2.10. Caprice rounded out the 1-7-8-5 superfecta that paid $332.20 while the exacta and trifecta returned $54.60 and $101.60, respectively.
Russian Rosie (Ire) (Traditionally) was a head farther back in fifth, while Favorite Fantasy (Richter Scale) and Absolutely Cindy (Arch) completed the field. Empiress (Empire Maker) was withdrawn.
Winter View made her U.S. stakes debut in this spot, just 18 days after capturing an allowance going 1 1/2 miles on Keeneland's turf by two lengths. With this one added to her line, the chestnut now owns a 20-4-1-3 record having banked $206,420 in lifetime earnings.
"It wasn't my intention (to run her in the Bewitch) when we came here (to Keeneland)," Sheppard said. "We ran on the (third) day of the meet in a mile-and-a-half allowance race, and she did win it so nicely. I thought while we're here -- she's had a race over the track at the distance, so what have we got to lose. We had a lot to gain and sure enough she came through for us."
The Kentucky-bred mare is the second registered foal out of 2000 Del Mar Oaks (G1) queen No Matter What (Nureyev) and counts as a half-sister the unbeaten English champion juvenile filly Rainbow View (Dynaformer), who is expected to line up in the May 3 One Thousand Guineas (Eng-G1). No Matter What has also produced Just as Well (A.P. Indy), placed in the Maker's Mark Mile (G1) and Gulfstream Park Turf H. (G1) earlier this year; an unnamed yearling colt by Smart Strike; and a 2009 filly by Dynaformer. This is the same family as recent Lexington S. (G2) hero Advice (Chapel Royal), possible for the May 2 Kentucky Derby (G1); Raven's Pass (Elusive Quality), winner of last year's Breeders' Cup Classic (G1) and Queen Elizabeth II S. (Eng-G1); multiple Grade 2-winning sire E Dubai (Mr. Prospector); and 1986 Belmont S. (G1) scorer, Danzig Connection (Danzig).
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